Have you been recently terminated from your job for no good reason? Are you perhaps harassed or discriminated against at work? If so, you should look for the right employment lawyer.
There is a myriad of reputable lawyers to choose from, but not many are experts in employment law. Make sure the professional you eventually choose is knowledgeable and experienced in this area.
The tips below will help you choose the right one in California.
Ask for recommendations
Most individuals commence their search for the right employment lawyer by asking their close friends and family members for recommendations. This tactic is an excellent start, as in most situations, a person you trust will end up recommending you a reliable attorney. The size of legal communities in Californian cities, even large ones like Los Angeles, is relatively small.
Consequently, you’ll be able to discover the names of the best employment attorneys in the area in no time. Nevertheless, when a friend or relative vouches for a particular lawyer, it doesn’t mean you should hire this professional right away. Make sure to take recommendations with a grain of salt, as the recommended lawyer might not be a good fit for your case.
Besides asking for recommendations, many individuals start their search by using search engines like Google, Yahoo, or Bing. The top results will reveal the best-rated employment attorneys in California. While client reviews and testimonials are absolutely helpful, you must conduct extra research to figure out the specialty of each lawyer. Read more about the incredible importance of customer reviews.
Visit the state bar website
The next piece of advice to follow is to visit the website of the State Bar of California. On this site, you can easily look up attorneys by name to check their history and credentials. The State Bar’s site provides detailed information about every Californian attorney, including his/her phone number, address, email, and fax.
Besides contact information, this official website informs visitors about the county, law school, status history, admission date, bar number, and California Lawyers Association membership of each attorney. Most importantly, it provides information about the discipline of lawyers, which influences their ability to practice law. After gaining insight into the essential information about the employment attorneys in your area, you should explore the websites of those you find to be suitable candidates.
You should visit the site of the most promising candidates and start reading their biography. The biographies will inform you about the specific types of cases these professionals handle. If you’re looking for a California employment lawyer, make sure his track record speaks for itself. Pay attention to the memberships of candidates in renowned associations, their publications, and speaking engagements.
After conducting extensive research into the employment lawyers in your local area, it’s time to narrow the list down and schedule interviews with the most promising candidates. There are multiple questions you should ask during the interviews, especially to those whose answers you couldn’t find on the lawyer’s site.
Since the experience of these professionals is crucial in providing solid legal representation, make sure to discover how long each candidate has been practicing law. While new employment attorneys are usually more devoted to their clients, long-term experience is unquestionably a must. It’s of the utmost importance for the attorney you hire to have experience in employment law. He/ She should focus on this practice area by working on cases similar to yours.
Moreover, you should inquire about the number of cases that involve the specific claims you have. For instance, some professionals focus on representing harassed and discriminated clients, whereas others focus on wage and hour cases. Another thing to learn is whether the attorney takes cases to trial if a settlement isn’t reached.
How your attorney will handle the case is essential as well. Some Californian employment attorneys work with a team of paralegals, younger attorneys, and other personnel. Follow this URL, https://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/paralegal, for a definition of a paralegal. Hence, you should know which people will be working on the case and who will be in charge of preparing you for depositions and potential trials.
Another aspect to inform yourself about is how you will be updated about the case. You should know the primary point of contact and be in constant communication with the legal representative throughout the case. Some lawyers prefer to communicate over the phone, whereas others favor email communication. The attorney needs to respond to your calls or emails in a few hours, not in a few days.
Furthermore, an experienced employment attorney is supposed to assess the strengths and weaknesses of your case. After providing him/her with the case details, you should discuss the strengths of the case, along with the potential weak spots.
Another question to ask during the interview should be related to the membership of these professionals in an employment law organization. The state of California has the California Employment Lawyers Association, where the number of employment attorneys exceeds a hundred. Los Angeles is home to the Los Angeles County Bar Association. Membership in any of these or other reputable organizations is a plus.
Inquire about the fees
The ultimate aspect to discuss with your potential employment lawyer is the fees you’ll have to pay. Keep in mind that attorneys in different areas of practice charge differently. For instance, estate lawyers usually charge a flat fee for their services, such as drafting a will or trust. Conversely, most business litigation attorneys charge on an hourly basis.
Personal injury lawyers tend to charge a contingency rate. Find out more about contingency pricing. In employment law, most attorneys hired by plaintiffs charge a contingency rate as well, which is about forty percent of the recovery. The reason behind the high percentage of commission is the intensive nature of employment litigation.
To sum up
The ultimate choice of an attorney is solely yours.
Find one that matches your needs and personality!